Influences: The Blocky Thing, Picasso & the Minotaur

Posted on Monday, July 14th, 2014 at 4:03 pm

The Blocky Thing

In this post I talk briefly about that the great beast that torments Charlie in his dreams. In our script we called it The Blocky Thing. We love the blocky thing, very fun to come up with it’s various incarnations!

As seen above: The first time it appears, they form themselves out of the rock slide, with tar and oil and fire from the earth’s depths. The next the flesh of Charlie’s co workers unite in a body horror reality bending scene so that it can beat him up in the real world a little!

My Blocky thing is part Minotaur, part Cthulhu. I also took a lot of inspiration from images of japanese Animism like those we see in Princess Mononoke. This shot in particular was a call out to that lovely movie.

Pre Minotaur sketches of the first appearance of the Blocky Thing.

Pre Minotaur sketches of the first appearance of the Blocky Thing.

The first drawings I did of the Blocky Thing as a Minotaur.

The first drawings I did of the Blocky Thing as a Minotaur.

Until very late in the game, just before I started to draw the art, I was unsure how to draw The Blocky Thing. You can see the much more vague form it took in the first thumbnails I drew here. But then I read something about how Picasso had used the Minotaur in his work over the years. And it seemed to perfectly sum up what I was after.

That helped clarify for me an archetype [the Minotaur] I could build from to create my own narrative tool: A dark internal voice that embodies the essentialist conflict Charlie is having with himself over what to do.

To live where he’s comfortable and feel he fits, in the country on the land he grew up on. Or do what some might think is the more adult and modern thing, leave the homestead and make a life for himself in the big city?

picassos_bullsgifFIXEDHe’s been attempting the later for most of his twenties. But without a real purpose in the city that he can see, he take sad news about the health of his dog/life buddy Scrappy as an opportunity to move back home and regroup.

The Beast within does not really take a side, it mostly just uses hyper masculinity and ruthless fault finding to criticise Charlie’s choices whatever they are! He can not measure up to his deepest inner critic!

I think it may be, but i’m not sure if this was the exact text I read-it hits on the same notes: this is from Martin Ries’s “Picasso and the Myth of the Minotaur“…

Minotauromachia“Monsters are expressions of time out of joint, they are the antithesis of the hero whose weapons are positive powers.[4]   Thus the Torera (Europa? Pasiphaë? Ariadne?) in Minotauromachia surrenders her sword to the Minotaur in suicidal gesture. Does this sword become the lance that pierces the horse in Guernica ? Was the Warrior, finally ossified into a fallen and broken statue, originally the vital rider of the horse, a traditional symbol of the unconquerable force of the ego? Like the composed, unmoved Onlookers with their doves of Venus in Minotauromachia, the bull in Guernica presides over the catastrophe aloof from human suffering, not as a symbol of “darkness and depravity” but of the natural forces of the universe, of creativity, fertility and regeneration, existentially unconcerned with moral issues. The bull (“a bull’s form disguised the god”) is the principle fecundity; the Minotaur (‘deluded bull”) devouring youths in his pentagon-labyrinth is the perversion of god and man.”

More interesting related links:
Philip Hartigan’s Meditation on ‘Blind Minotaur Being Led by a Girl‘ (1934-35) by Pablo Picasso

A stop motion animated short by Juan Pablo Etcheverry! Great stuff!
Inspired in Pablo Picasso’s work and the Myth of the Labyrinth and the Minotaur,
an animated journey to the ins and outs of artistic creation. It’s really pretty cool.

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